Creative Process with Deborah Dancy

July 21, 2014 § Leave a comment


Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill.

It’s summer and no better time to take a trip to Cape Cod and gain some artistic knowledge while enjoying the sun and the sea.  The timing finally came together for me to make this dream come true and I was excited to be taking a Process: Meaning & Making workshop with Deborah Dancy at the Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill.


My three collage sketches set the stage for the week.

Day one the assignment was to create a collage sketch from pieces of ephemera that Deborah had brought to get us jump-started.  Books, magazines, coloring books all for the taking along with a little image transfer to boot.  Our collages needed to be boiled down to only three to five pieces strategically designed to be the inspiration point for our finished pieces.


Alisha Keller and Trish Berube working in the studio.

Our afternoons were spent toiling away with the intention to play with materials and force ourselves into the uncomfortable unknown with our art projects.  Working with various pieces of papers, sticks, paints and tools like squeegees and paint rollers-anything was bound to happen.

Group therapy.

Group therapy.

Part of the process was connecting with the other workshop participants.  It was the group consensus that we all pushed the boundaries and created pieces that were surprisingly personal and unexpected.

Sisters Maddie Goldman and Ellen Hirst were an inspiration to us all.

Sisters Maddie Goldman and Ellen Hirsch  were an inspiration to us all.

Deborah Dancy would give us focus and direction in the morning sessions by cutting our pieces, adding things and making comments.   In the afternoons we were busy figuring out what she told us.  By midweek things were moving along at a fevered pitch.

Deborah Dancy critiques Trish Berubes art pieces.

Deborah Dancy critiques Trish Berubes art pieces.

By the last day of our workshop the group had pulled together enough work for a critique and Deborah gave each of us a thoughtful commentary and direction.  The outcome was extraordinary in the vastly different and unique pieces that were created.

Ellen Hirsch with her final pieces.

Ellen Hirsch with her final pieces.

By the end of our workshop we all felt challenged and excited about new possibilities for the future.  The cat was out of the bag and we would never be the same again.

My final creation.

My final creation.

Each day I worked on a new painting collage based on the sketches that I designed earlier in the week.  When it was time for my final critique I told Deborah that I felt like I wanted to work bigger.  She promptly had my four pieces, with one upside down, tacked up together on the barn door to make one large collage that would measure 44″ x 60″.   I’m inspired.  Thanks Deborah.

Synergies: New Gallery Artists Expo

January 5, 2014 § Leave a comment

This original monotype entitled 'Pet Me' is included in the Synergies: New Artists Expo.

This original monotype entitled ‘Pet Me’ is included in the Synergies: New Artists Expo.

Recently I’ve been working a series of monotypes that will be included in the Synergies:  New Gallery Artists Expo that opens on January 10th and runs thru February 9th, 2014.  Eight of my pieces are included in this exhibit that features five new Gallery Artists in the Dillon Gallery at the South Shore Art Center in Cohasset, MA.  This exhibit runs in conjunction with the ‘Made in America’ Gallery Artists Juried Exhibit in the Bancroft Gallery.

'Red Sea' original monotype included in Synergies Exhibit.

‘Red Sea’ original monotype included in Synergies Exhibit.

The series is a recent snapshot of my interest in the natural beauty of color, texture, scale and spontaneity. Each print is unique and one-of-a-kind, which is inherent in monotype printmaking. The process begins by choosing a plexiglass plate whereby mediums are applied, built up, and then removed until the image is to my liking. My interest in working with inks, and how they can be manipulated, is fascinating and challenging both creatively and technically. I also create templates made from various materials ranging from plastic cutting boards to pieces of fabric and found materials that impart texture into the print. While working, I may have a story in mind. Sometimes it evolves as I work with the materials, similar to a musician that warms up to find a groove, thereby creating the unexpected while following the intuition of the moment.

Original monotype entitled 'Kitty Come Home' is included in the Synergies:  New Gallery Artists Expo.

Original monotype entitled ‘Kitty Come Home’ is included in the Synergies: New Gallery Artists Expo.

Abstract ideas are incorporated with a touch of realism—ancient forms fused with modernism. Scale is another aspect of my work that intrigues me. In this series there are larger pieces along with smaller ones. Within the compositions there are elements that are both large and small creating altered perspectives. Once I am satisfied with the composition a sheet of Arches 88 paper is placed over the plate and is run through a hand press. The pressure from the roller transfers the image onto the paper. The monotype process allows for a looseness with unexpected results that add character and unusual details to the finished print. The final pieces give enough information to bring the viewer to the threshold of their own interpretations.

This monotype entitled 'Twins' is included in the exhibit.

This monotype entitled ‘Twins’ is included in the exhibit.

Please visit this exhibit that has it’s opening reception on January 10th from 6 to 8 pm.  The South Shore Art Center operates Monday–Saturday 10–4, Sunday 12–4.

119 Ripley Road
Cohasset, MA 02025
Tel: 781 383 2787 Fax: 781 383 2964

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